The PT Boat Forum
http://www.ptboatforum.com/cgi-bin/MB2/netboard.cgi


Forum Category: PT Boats of WWII
http://www.ptboatforum.com/cgi-bin/MB2/netboard.cgi?cid=101&fct=showf


Forum Name: PT Boats - General
http://www.ptboatforum.com/cgi-bin/MB2/netboard.cgi?fct=gotoforum&cid=101&fid=102


Topic: Missing Life Raft
http://www.ptboatforum.com/cgi-bin/MB2/netboardr.cgi?cid=101&fid=102&tid=2960



I'm no expert on the 109 but I'm wondering why this kit did not include a life raft. There are several indications on the box and book that one should have been there. Does anyone know if there was one aboard the 109. If not, why would that happen?



Posted By: Roy Forbes | Posted on: Dec 7, 2012 - 3:16pm
Total Posts: 346 | Joined: Sep 5, 2012 - 4:57pm



Roy we know that it certainly was removed before the sinking of the boat. The 109 did have her life raft coming out of Elco, and it may have been on the boat before Kennedy took over. It was removed, and although they had a dingy, it was never on the boat itself. I think one should have been included in the kit, for those who may have wanted to build her fresh from the factory. I would have liked to have one included, and Italeri may mold one for future release, not 100% sure though. Dave Waples would know the answer to that.



Posted By: Frank J Andruss Sr | Posted on: Dec 7, 2012 - 4:47pm
Total Posts: 3124 | Joined: Oct 9, 2006 - 6:09am



It's my understanding that Italeri does plan to create some additional parts which would include the life raft. I'm not sure if it will appear as a kit of upgrade parts or would be included in another boat release. Time will tell what Italeri's marketing department decides to do. That's about the best I can do for you now.

Don't put any stock in the box art.

Dave

David Waples

Posted By: David Waples | Posted on: Dec 7, 2012 - 7:27pm
Total Posts: 1490 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm



Would the life raft for a 103 series boat be the same as the one on Italeri's 596 boat? If so I guess it would be easy to make a resin copy.

BTW thanks to all of you who helped in getting this model accurately produced and to all of you who have posted information. Your passion for this subject is appreciated.

I have the kit and I plan to begin the build shortly. I just received Royal Models Accessories kit. It is very nice even the pelican. As many of us said, aftermarket SWP figures by Italeri sure would be nice.

This site and PT-103 site are the first ones I turn to when I get home.

Mike Witous

Semper Fidelis

Temecula Valley Model Club
Haud Sceptum Haud Sentio Haud Forsit

http://www.meetup.com/TemValModClub/


Posted By: Gunner Mike | Posted on: Dec 7, 2012 - 10:54pm
Total Posts: 18 | Joined: Nov 17, 2012 - 10:18pm



Hi Mike,
Definitely different than the 596 and later Elco boats in general. I'm hoping some of our guys can come up with a good photo or drawing. Here's a couple that somebody shared earlier and that will give you a feel for what it looked like. As you can see it is narrower and more rounded on the ends than the 596 kit. Also the cross section is more round. I find glimpses of them here and there. When I exchanged letters with Mr. Keresey of PT-105 he indicated that theirs, if it was on the boat at all, was usually thrown on top of the day cabin, or chart house. You rarely see them on the foredeck as they rolled out of the factory but as the photo below shows at least this one landed on the foredeck that particular day.

[IMAGE]http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n27/David_Waples/PT%20BOATS/PT154-Treasury.jpg[/IMAGE]

[IMAGE]http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n27/David_Waples/PT%20BOATS/Image.jpg[/IMAGE]

David Waples

Posted By: David Waples | Posted on: Dec 8, 2012 - 5:54am
Total Posts: 1490 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm



Mike,
I did some hunting around. If you google "Carley Floats" you'll find all kinds of information on these life rafts. All different shapes and sizes.

I'm wondering if anyone can tell us how they were outfitted. I know the one that Jerry has on his boat is outfitted and he may have some history about it for us.

Dave

David Waples

Posted By: David Waples | Posted on: Dec 8, 2012 - 6:07am
Total Posts: 1490 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm



Hi David,
I stocked up our Liferaft with the stuff that Frank Andruss recommended we have in the raft when I asked his advice a few years back. We have just recently added the desalter kit (yellow) and also not shown a brand new solar still kit. Possibly not normally issued but still a cool addition! Here is a photo taken last May. Jerry

PT658 life raft taken last May 2012
[image]http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p249/ptboats/PT658/IMG_1479-1.jpg[/image]

Similar Life raft showing floating wood lattice floor

[image]http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p249/ptboats/PT658/balsaliferaft.jpg[/image]

Jerry Gilmartin

Posted By: Jerry Gilmartin | Posted on: Dec 8, 2012 - 11:46pm
Total Posts: 1155 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm



Jerry.

Thank you for all of the most excellent and wonderful images you share with us.

I remember a thread from a while back that was discussing the rafts. In that thread it was mentioned that the rafts did NOT have the expanding netting inside them.

I've been thinking that it wouldn't be hard to gleam the dimensions of the PT-103 Class balsaraft from images of that reft stowed on some of those early PT boats. There is an image of PT-105 (I believe at the factory but outside it and with I think PT-109 next to it on the port side) that shows the raft on the starboard foredeck of 105 and just forward of the torpedo tube. That tube or the deck hatch can be used to glean the dimensions of the raft from. There's another image of PT-157 with the raft and the crew on the foredeck at Rendova in July 1943 that could be used too.

I think the raft could be carved from balsa would and then covered with a thin layer of tissue and that it wouldn't be that hard to build.

Cheers



"Give me a fast boat for we want to get out of harm's way too."

Posted By: PeterTareBuilder2 | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 12:24am
Total Posts: 202 | Joined: Dec 8, 2012 - 6:03pm



I couldn't find a drawing for PTs 103-114 but an Elco drawing for PTs 115-186 & 314-367 shows the chocks as having a 5 1/4" radius, canvas padding would make the life raft about a 5" radius.

I scaled the drawing and came up with the life raft being about 84" x 41" on the outside.

The 2 side chocks were 28" apart. The forward chock was offset from the boats centerline 1 1/2" to starboard, the aft chock was offset 1 1/2" to port.

The deck arrangement drawing for PTs 103-196 & 314-367 shows the life raft located between frames 11 and 17.

As an aside, the drawing for PTs 565-624 shows the life raft, with a squarish cross section, stowed inside the overturned dingy.




Posted By: Jeff D | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 4:22am
Total Posts: 1450 | Joined: Dec 21, 2006 - 1:30am



Peter, these seem to be tightly wrapped with canvas or something similar. Another way to approach it would be to get some blank decal sheets and cut into long thin strips. First paint or seal your balsa (or whatever material you decide to use). Then carefully wrap the piece with decals strips to simulate the wrapping. You want to avoid kinks and unwanted folds. You'll notice that there are thicker strips evenly distributed around the boat. Use something thicker to simulate that.

Jerry, I'm assuming that the thicker strips secure the rope and framework for the drop down portion of the boat. Is that correct?

Dave

David Waples

Posted By: David Waples | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 4:29am
Total Posts: 1490 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm



Hi David,
You are correct. The "thicker strips" you are referring to I think are actually webbing strap material sewed into a loop that encircles the raft itself. There are 12 of these "strap loops" evenly spaced around the perimeter of the raft. Into these webbing loops are two eyelets through which two small (3/8 inch) lines are threaded. The small lines go around the inside and outside circumference of the raft. The cork "net floats" and coiled up lanyards attach to the outer circumference line, while the collapsing net that holds the floating lattice floor attaches to the inner circumferential line.

Hey Peter, I dont remember any concrete conclusions being made as to whether of not ALL PT Boat Balsa Rafts did or did not have the collapsable net floor. What are you basing this conclusion upon? I have several photos of Higgins boats that did indeed have this type of raft. Do you have some good pictures that demonstrate what you are talking about? I spent a lot of time and effort to make ours as authentic as possible and would like to know if it was all for naught. I was thinking perhaps there were more than one manufacturer of life rafts being used on PT Boats? What do you think? Thanks Jerry

PS I included some pics below showing in 5 of 6 the collapsible net floor type raft. In the PT344 raft, it looks like the net has been removed or shortened.

Al Ross photo of a PT-295 class Higgins bridge showing raft with Collapsable net holding floor

[image]http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p249/ptboats/Jerry%20Gilmartin/PT295-1.jpg[/image]

PT302 with closeup of raft, it looks like the collapsable net is there too

[image]http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p249/ptboats/Jerry%20Gilmartin/PT302closeupcharthouse.jpg[/image]

PT305 (Jack Hughes photo) showing the same type of raft

[image]http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p249/ptboats/Jerry%20Gilmartin/PT305crewonbarrelboxJackHughes.jpg[/image]

PT344 (Bob Hostetter collection) showing the wood lattice floor seemingly modified to be tied directly to the raft without using the webbing straps

[image]http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p249/ptboats/Jerry%20Gilmartin/PT344touchingupRON25logo-1.jpg[/image]

PT459 in England with obvious collapsable net type raft up against the side of charthouse

[image]http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p249/ptboats/Jerry%20Gilmartin/PT459.jpg[/image]

PT625 (Bill Skade collection) on Lake Ponchartrain with the same raft

[image]http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p249/ptboats/Jerry%20Gilmartin/PT625SkadeNewOrleanszoom.jpg[/image]

It was based on these above photos why I chose to make the collapsable net style of liferaft for PT658.

Jerry Gilmartin

Posted By: Jerry Gilmartin | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 11:59am
Total Posts: 1155 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm



With Elco at least, many different manufacturer's were used for many of the different parts that made up the boat. This was needed to insure the boats would be kept on schedule. I am pretty sure Jerry, several Companies were most likely used to produce the rafts for the boats, not just one place. Specs were given out, but I bet some models were a bit different than others, but were passed by Elco and Naval Officials. I can see Higgins doing the same thing, so that a multitude of outside sources would be able to keep up with demand.



Posted By: Frank J Andruss Sr | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 2:24pm
Total Posts: 3124 | Joined: Oct 9, 2006 - 6:09am



Jerry.

My comments about the Elco raft not having the drop down netting were based on my recollection of things I read on this forum some time back. I tried doing a search looking for the thread but there are a lot of posts to go through. I haven't found it yet will look later as time permits.

Cheers

"Give me a fast boat for we want to get out of harm's way too."

Posted By: PeterTareBuilder2 | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 3:31pm
Total Posts: 202 | Joined: Dec 8, 2012 - 6:03pm



Speaking of raft, have you guy seen Bridge Carney's book PT-157 A SCALE MODEL
BUILDER'S NOTEBOOK (805 498 6162). There is a long article on how to built the
raft. Also the book is worth reading for advanced modelers.
Victor

Victor K Chun

Posted By: victorkchun | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 4:25pm
Total Posts: 339 | Joined: Sep 1, 2008 - 1:53pm



If the original raft on the 103 series boats was indeed a Carley Float, it is unlikely that it was a balsa raft. The Carley float consisted of a copper tube bent into an oval shape that was then covered with cork or kapoc, then wrapped in canvas. Here are several references:

[url]http://www.google.com/patents?id=yUJsAAAAEBAJ&pg=PA1&source=gbs_selected_pages&cad=2#v=onepage&q&f=false[/url]

[url]http://www.awm.gov.au/encyclopedia/hmas_sydney/carleyfloat.pdf[/url]

Al Ross



Posted By: alross2 | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 6:34pm
Total Posts: 854 | Joined: Oct 30, 2006 - 8:19pm



Wow! Too cool AL!
Which brings me to my final question....why didnt we just ask Al in the first place? Thanks again for the enlightenment. Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin

Posted By: Jerry Gilmartin | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 8:12pm
Total Posts: 1155 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm



Here's another photo Drew sent to me this evening to post.

[IMAGE]http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n27/David_Waples/PT%20BOATS/PT105andPT103onboardtransport.jpg[/IMAGE]

PT's 103 and 105 with their rafts on board.

Dave

David Waples

Posted By: David Waples | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 8:42pm
Total Posts: 1490 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm




Here's another photo Drew sent to me this evening to post.

[IMAGE]http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n27/David_Waples/PT%20BOATS/PT105andPT103onboardtransport.jpg[/IMAGE]

PT's 103 and 105 with their rafts on board.

Dave

David Waples


That's the image I was referring to upthread where I stated that you could gleam the measurements of the raft by measuring it against the boat.

Cheers

"Give me a fast boat for we want to get out of harm's way too."

Posted By: PeterTareBuilder2 | Posted on: Dec 9, 2012 - 9:19pm
Total Posts: 202 | Joined: Dec 8, 2012 - 6:03pm



Copper tube eh? I never would have guessed that. Thanks for the links and education Al.




Posted By: Jeff D | Posted on: Dec 10, 2012 - 2:51am
Total Posts: 1450 | Joined: Dec 21, 2006 - 1:30am



Some training photos Frank forwarded to be posted.
Dave


[IMAGE]http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n27/David_Waples/PT%20BOATS/68461PTBoatsandactivitiesatMTBTrainingCenterMelvill.jpg[/IMAGE]

[IMAGE]http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n27/David_Waples/PT%20BOATS/68459PTBoatsandactivitiesatMTBTrainingCenterMelvill.jpg[/IMAGE]

[IMAGE]http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n27/David_Waples/PT%20BOATS/68458PTBoatsandactivitiesatMTBTrainingCenterMelvill.jpg[/IMAGE]

This last one is one of the only images I've seen with the deck mounted block to support the raft. Seems like crews in theatre working in the night would not want these little trip hazards lying around. Were they removed by the crews?

[IMAGE]http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n27/David_Waples/PT%20BOATS/1027253_1.jpg[/IMAGE]

David Waples

Posted By: David Waples | Posted on: Dec 10, 2012 - 5:02am
Total Posts: 1490 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm